Wednesday, November 9, 2011 If you know someone who would like to be on this listserv, please send their email 




Wednesday,   November   9,   2011  


If   you   know   someone   who   would   like   to   be   on   this   listserv,   please   send   their   email   address   to



***PLEASE   NOTE:   Each   entry   in   this   Weekly   Update   features   the   email   address   of   at   least   one   contact   person   or   department.

   For   questions,   concerns   or   technical   assistance,   please   email   the   appropriate   contact(s)   directly.





 Send   Us   Your   Input   on   the   Proposed   2012 ‐ 13   School   Accountability   Model    

 Next   Generation   of   Assessments:   NC   Test  

Next   Generation   of   Assessments:   Test   Specifications  

Measures   of   Student   Learning   Design   Groups   Meet   in   Chapel   Hill  

New   IIS   Video   for   Students   Online  


IIS   Planning   Marches   On  

Online   Writing   Instruction  

Next   Generation   of   Assessments:   Timeline   for   North   Carolina  

Expanded   Team   at   DPI   to   Support   the   NCEES   Online   Tool

DSW   Approvals   Update  

2012   Collaborative   Conference   for   Student   Achievement   (CCSA)  



Offer   Your   Input   on   the   Proposed   2012 ‐ 13   School   Accountability   Model    

NCDPI   would   like   to   hear   your   thoughts   regarding   the   new   school   accountability   model.


Please   use   the   following   email   address,,   to   send   us   your   feedback.

  Before   doing   so,   you   might   want   to   also   visit,   where   you   will   find   a   “Key   Questions   for   Feedback”   document   to   use   in   formulating   your   thoughts.

  Any   feedback   received   prior   to   November   30   can   be   used   to   inform   the   State   Board   of   Education’s   (SBE)   discussion   of   the   new   model   in   its   December   meeting.

  The   target   date   for   SBE   approval  




  of   this   model   is   January   2012.



Next   Generation   of   Assessments:   NC   Test  

As   part   of   the   Next   Generation   of   Assessments,   North   Carolina   aims   to   have   all   assessments   online   by   the   2014 ‐ 15   school   year.

  NCTest   v2.5

  is   the   web   browser ‐ based   testing   system   that   will   serve   as   the   web   application   used   to   deliver   online   statewide   summative   assessments   for   the   North   Carolina   Testing   Program   for   the   2011 ‐ 12   school   year.

   NCTest   v2.5

  presents   test   questions   that   match   or   are   comparable   to   the   appearance   of   items   on   paper   forms   while   keeping   the   bandwidth   footprint   very   low.



More   information   is   available   on   our   website   at   and   in   the   NCTest   brochure   at



A   tutorial   is   available   to   familiarize   test   administrators   and   students   with   the   functional   components   of   the   online   assessment   system   at

  We   strongly   encourage   all   students   to   complete   the   tutorial   prior   to   test   day.

  The   tutorial   is   available   to   the   public   and   features   sample   tests   for   each   of   the   various   content   areas   that   have   online   assessments.




  Please   send   any   questions   to   acre ‐




Next   Generation   of   Assessments:   Test   Specifications  

Specifications   for   the   Next   Generation   of   Assessments   aligned   to   the   Common   Core  

State   Standards   in   English/Language   Arts   and   Mathematics   and   the   North   Carolina  

Essential   Standards   for   Science   are   now   available.

  Information   on   the   prioritization   of   the   standards,   cognitive   rigor,   item   complexity,   item   types,   and   assessment   delivery   modes   is   included.

  You   can   find   the   new   test   specifications   on   our   website   at




  Please   send   any   questions   to   acre ‐




Measures   of   Student   Learning   Design   Groups   Meet   in   Chapel   Hill  

More   than   700   teachers   came   together   in   Chapel   Hill   the   week   of   Oct.

  24   to   discuss   meaningful   assessment   in   currently   non ‐ tested   grades   and   subjects.

   Educators   met  

  together   in   content   groups   ranging   from   the   arts   to   world   languages   to   science.


Teachers   first   received   training   on   assessment   design,   including   reliability   and   validity   of   measures   of   student   growth.

   Then   they   provided   feedback   on   content   standards,  

including   recommendations   for   the   best   methods   for   assessment   for   their   standards   and   qualitative   feedback   on   assessment   for   their   content   area.

   The   teachers’   feedback   will   be   used   to   generate   items   (including   constructed   response   questions)   that   the   teachers   will   review   when   they   meet   again   in   the   spring.



Student   growth   is   the   focus   of   the   new   sixth   standard   of   the   teacher   evaluation   system.

   This   will   inform   teachers'   ratings   in   these   new   measures   of   student   learning.



MORE   INFO:   Jennifer   Preston,




New   IIS   Video   for   Students   Online

Please   check   out   a   new   video   that   introduces   the   vision   for   the   Instructional  

Improvement   System   as   told   from   a   student’s   point   of   view.

   It   can   be   found   at  



Eric   Moore,








IIS   Planning   Marches   On  

Thanks   to   all   of   you   who   participated   in   our   August   focus   groups   and/or   our   September   webinars   to   provide   feedback   on   the   specifications   for   the   Instructional   Improvement  


  We   received   very   valuable   insight,   which   we   are   incorporating   into   our   Request   for   Proposal.



We   also   are   working   diligently   to   establish   a   standing   External   Stakeholder   Advisory  

Committee   and   a   standing   Teacher   User   Group   to   provide   us   with   recommendations   and   direction   on   a   more   regular   basis.

  Look   for   more   information   related   to   that   effort  

  over   the   next   few   weeks.


You   also   will   soon   be   hearing   more   about   North   Carolina’s   role   in   the   Shared   Learning  


  We   are   among   nine   states   working   with   the   Gates   and   Carnegie  

Foundations   to   create   a   nationwide   “electronic   marketplace”   for   Common   Core ‐ aligned   curricular   resources.

  We   anticipate   a   great   deal   of   interaction   among   this   initiative,   the  


NC   Education   Cloud   and   the   IIS.


MORE   INFO:   Sarah   McManus,,   or   Eric   Moore,



Online   Writing   Instruction    


Online   Writing   Instruction   is   new   for   2011 ‐ 12   and   is   taking   the   place   of   the   Writing  

Instruction   System   (WIS)   that   was   used   in   2009 ‐ 10   and   2010 ‐ 11.

  Online   Writing  

Instruction   is   not   an   assessment,   but   instead   it   is   a   tool   that   is   meant   to   be   used   for   instructional   purposes   and   as   a   resource   to   evaluate   student   writing   and   adjust   instruction   accordingly.

  LEAs   and   charter   schools   are   strongly   encouraged   to   use   Online  

Writing   Instruction   as   an   instructional   tool   because   writing   is   integral   to   the   Common  

Core   State   Standards   for   ELA   and   other   NC   Essential   Standards.

  The   Online   Writing  

Instruction   website,,   has   been   updated   to   reflect   the   changes   for   2011 ‐ 12,   and   more   information   will   be   posted   to   this   site   as   it  

  becomes   available.


MORE   INFO:   Jim   Kroening,,   or   acre ‐




Next   Generation   of   Assessments:   Timeline   for   North   Carolina  

North   Carolina   is   on   track   to   achieve   full   online   administration   of   assessments   by   2014 ‐


  The   following   timeline   outlines   the   steps   that   will   take   place   each   year   to   make   this   happen:  



2012 ‐

‐ 12:


  Stand ‐ alone


  field   testing assessments  

  of   new aligned  

  assessments to   CCSS   (for  


ELA   and



Science,   ELA)   


 and   NC   Essential   Standards   (for   Science)   will   be   administered   operationally   

2014 ‐ 15:   Expected   assessments   operational   from   Smarter   Balanced   Assessment  

Consortium   (shared   between   states)   in   ELA/Math   3 ‐ 8   and   one   High   School  

Assessment   in   ELA   and   Math   (w/   Performance   Tasks   in   9   &   10)




  And   please  

  send   any   questions   to   acre ‐



Expanded   Team   at   DPI   to   Support   the   NCEES   Online   Tool  

The   DPI   Professional   Development   Leads   are   available   to   help   you   with   the   use   of   the  

NCEES   online   tool   in   your   region.

    Contact   information   for   each   region   can   be   found   at

   Robert   Sox   is   the   state   contact   who   also   is   available   to   assist   you.

   His   contact   information   is


(919)   807 ‐ 3348.



MORE   INFO:    Dr.

  Eliz   Colbert,



DSW   Approvals   Update  


Only   a   very   few   of   our   LEAs   and   participating   charter   schools   have   yet   to   submit   their   refined    Race   to   the   Top   Detailed   Scopes   of   Work   (DSWs)   based   on   feedback   provided   by   NCDPI.

    Currently,   129   of   142   DSWs   have   been   fully   approved.



***NOTE:   The   approved   DSWs   posted   on   the   NCDPI   website  

( ‐ charter/)   are   in   an   Excel   downloadable   file.

  For   any   future   amendments   to   your   LEA   or   charter   school   file,   please   download   the  

Excel   file   version   from   this   website   to   make   your   revisions.



MORE   INFO:   Adam   Levinson,



2012   Collaborative   Conference   for   Student   Achievement   (CCSA)  


Conference   Dates:           March   19 ‐ 21,   2012  

Conference   Theme:         Engaging   NC   in   Transforming   21 st

  Century   Teaching   and   Learning  

Conference   Strands:        Great   Teachers   and   Principals;   Quality   Standards   and  

Assessments;   Turnaround   of   Lowest   Achieving   Schools;   

Data   System   to   Improve   Instruction  





919 ‐ 807 ‐ 3630   or   email